what is the most eco sugar?

This is a follow-up post on the sustainability of various sweeteners from boingghealth. I’m relieved to see coconut sugar and maple syrup up there with a decent score, they’re the only sweeteners I use on occasion. I prefer to use dried fruit. I’m not a fan of stevia and Xylitol but even I was surprised at their low scores.


Some suggest coconut sugar is the ‘most sustainable sugar in the world’. Let’s look at the alternatives, we’ve given each of them an ‘eco rating’ out of 10.

shutterstock_152030456Agave syrup – plant is completely destroyed to produce the nectar, it is slow growing and crop renewal is poorly managed, often leading to shortages and rocketing prices. Is a liquid sugar, so cannot be used in chocolate production or as a complete replacement for crystalline sugar. Agave syrup is often ‘cut’ with high fructose corn syrup.

Eco rating: 4/10

Beet Sugar – grown in rotation, so better than sugar cane. Also grows in Europe, so less transport emissions. Pesticide use very high. Herbicide use twice that of other crops. Biodiversity in fields is very low. Sugar beet production is a monopoly in UK.

Eco rating: 2/10

canne-sucreCane Sugar – Monocrop. Highly intensive use of water, and significant pollution as a result…

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5 thoughts on “what is the most eco sugar?

  1. This is really interesting. I agree about being surprised by the stevia score. It gets so much positive hype. I don’t really use sugar to often, but was wondering about date sugar, so this is very helpful to me. Thanks so much! 😊

    Liked by 1 person

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